The National Health Agency (NHA) Sunday clarified that arogya mitras for implementing the Centre's Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) are not being recruited by it or any human resource agency. The statement from the NHA, the apex implementing body of the national health insurance scheme, came after some individuals and agencies claimed that they were recruiting arogya mitras for implementing the scheme. The PMJAY was launched from Jharkhand by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last Sunday.\u00a0 The government has set a target of appointing 1,00,000 arogya mitras by the end of this year at private and state-run hospitals to assist patients in availing benefits under the PMJAY. They will also run help desks, check documents and redress grievances at hospitals. Individuals and agencies online or otherwise claiming to conduct such "illegal recruitment" are under law liable to be prosecuted, chief executive officer (CEO) of Ayushman Bharat-PMJAY,\u00a0Indu\u00a0Bhushan, said. The Health Ministry has signed a pact with the Skill Development Ministry for training the arogya mitras for the smooth implementation of the scheme. Dr\u00a0Dinesh Arora\u00a0, deputy CEO,\u00a0NHA said the arogya mitras will be recruited by the hospitals. "We have told the hospitals that local staff should be given first preference and should be designated as arogya mitras\u00a0as they know the staff and work procedures and patterns of the hospital concerned. "If at all needed they should hire people from outside, no recruitment agency should be involved in the process," he said The Ayushman Bharat-National Health Protection Mission (AB-NHPM), which was renamed the PMJAY, seeks to provide a coverage of Rs 5 lakh per family annually, benefiting more than 10.74 crore poor families for secondary and tertiary care hospitalisation\u00a0 through a network of Empanelled Health Care Providers (EHCP). The PMJAY will provide cashless and paperless access to services for the beneficiary at the point of service. It will help reduce catastrophic expenditure for hospitalizations, which impoverishes people and will help mitigate the financial risk arising out of catastrophic health episodes.